Winter in the tri-state area brings its fair share of freezing temperatures and with that, the potential for frozen pipes. When water freezes, its molecules crystalize and take up more room than when it is in liquid form. Meaning, as the ice forms and expands, it causes pressure and adds extra weight. As a result, this can lead to cracked or burst pipes. The pipes that are most at risk are those that are in unheated spaces such as attics, garages, basements and even exterior walls. The good news is that there are things that you can do to prepare for and prevent frozen pipes!
How to Prepare
The three main causes of frozen pipes are quick drops in temperature, poor insulation and thermostats that are set too low. Here are some tips on how you can prepare for and prevent a frozen pipe:
- Exposed pipes are most susceptible to freezing. Insulate pipes in your home’s crawl spaces and attic.
- Use heat tape or thermostatically controlled heat cables to wrap pipes.
- Seal leaks that allow cold air inside near where the pipes are located. Look for air leaks around electrical wiring, dryer vents and pipes, and use caulk or insulation to keep the cold out.
- Keep your thermostat set at the same temperature during both day and night.
- Open cabinet doors to allow heat to get to un-insulated pipes under sinks and appliances near exterior walls.
How to Recover
Know where your main water shutoff valve is. This is one of the most important things to be aware of to quickly stop the extent of the damage from growing. Shutting the water off can prevent additional areas of damage from adding to the immediate problem. Do this assuming it is safe to do so. Be aware of any electrical devices or open circuits that could cause electrocution. And if in doubt, always wait for a professional to handle the shutoff.
Next, call a Restoration Professional to stabilize the situation. At A.Molly, we will be able to take you through the clean up process and provide you with more information on next steps to take. Whether it is a minor leak or a major flood that has caused the damage to your home or business, A.Molly specializes in prompt water extraction and aggressive drying to get you quickly back to normal.